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Prof. Sir Eldryd Parry KCMG OBE

Eldryd Parry studied medicine at Cambridge and Cardiff and was seconded from 1960 to 1963 to University College Hospital, Ibadan, Nigeria. In 1966 he returned to Africa at Haile Sellassie I University, Addis Ababa, and left in 1969 to take the Chair of Medicine at Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Nigeria. In 1977 he became the Foundation Dean of Medicine at the University of Ilorin, Nigeria, where he introduced a radical community based programme, COBES. From 1980 to 1985 he was Dean and Professor of Medicine at the now Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, Ghana

In 1988 he founded THET, which he chaired until 2007. He was given a lifetime achievement award by the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene in 2007. He received the OBE in 1982 and was appointed KCMG in 2011.

Dr Yoseph Mamo Azmera

I am a medical doctor from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Following a medical and academic career at Jimma University and a promotion to Associate Professor of Medicine I worked as Medical Advisor and later Associate Director of Care and Treatment at the University of California, San Diego. After that I have been working as an Honorary Associate Professor at Jimma University and as advisor to THENA's Ethiopia Chronic Disease Programme. I am enabling the programme to adapt training to the country's health centre context, to maintain a high level of quality control across the project through ongoing mentoring and supervision and to overcome barriers that can cause projects to fail in Ethiopia, which include staff turnover. Most recently I have been helping the Ethiopian Federal Ministry of Health with the localisation of PACK (a practical approach to care kit) for primary care utilisation. You can read more about the research I have undertaken here.

Prof. David Phillips

I am a clinical researcher and epidemiologist at the University of Southampton, UK, where I hold a personal chair. I am also an honorary consultant physician with a specialty in endocrinology and diabetes at University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust. I have a research background in diabetes and various endocrine diseases and for many years led a research group investigating the links between early growth or development and subsequent metabolic and cardiovascular disease in adult life. I have been working on the Chronic NCD Programme in Ethiopia for the past nine years and have focussed on the problems of diabetes and rheumatic heart disease.

Prof. Shitaye Alemu

I am a professor in internal medicine at Gondar University. I have been leading the NCD decentralisation programme in Gondar since its inception back in the late 1990's. I am passionate about ensuring that the rural populations of Gondar receive long term treatment and care for their many chronic conditions. I love working in the rural environment with rural patients.

Dr Andrew Mortimore
Prof. Elisabeth Trimble

I am a Visiting Fellow at the University of Southampton and former Director of Public Health. Having previously lived and worked in sub-Saharan Africa for ten years, I am now working with the THENA team on strategy and policy development, and am leading our thinking on how the impact of our programmes can be maximised using public health approaches. As well as focusing on preventing the increasing burden of NCDs in Ethiopia I am particularly interested in exploring how NCDs are understood by individuals, their families and communities, and how behavioural insight work can lead to more appropriate service delivery models, better uptake and higher adherence to treatment.

Professor of Clinical Biochemistry and Metabolic Medicine at Queen’s University Belfast and Consultant Chemical Pathologist at the Royal Group of Hospitals, Belfast. I trained first as a Clinical Endocrinologist in Belfast and then spent more than ten years at the Institut de Biochimie Clinique, University of Geneva, involved in clinical and laboratory diabetes-related research. On return to Belfast my clinical duties included diabetes clinics and running the regional service for Inherited Metabolic Diseases (laboratory diagnostics and clinical management); diabetes research continued, both laboratory-based and clinical. I have been involved with the Chronic NCD Programme in Ethiopia since 2007 – with a particular interest in diabetes and a love for its rural population.

Prof. Dan Levene
Dr Tadesse Gemechu  

Professor of Semitics and the History of Religion at the University of Southampton. I specialise in popular beliefs, especially to do with healing, in the Near East and East Africa. I have been contributing to the THENA team in the consideration of NCD lost to follow up cases who are estimated to be as high as 60%. In their search for a cure these patients prefer the care of indigenous practitioners and/or frequent any one or a number of the many reputed healing sites in Ethiopia. My aim is to help reduce this percentage of defaulters by developing a better understanding of Ethiopians' beliefs and expectations and incorporating this into clinical care.

I trained as a doctor in Jimma and went on to specialise as an internist at the Black Lion Hospital in Addis Ababa.  Since 2008 I have been working as an internist and assistant professor of internal medicine at Jimma University.  I have gained further specialist training in S Korea and at the Aswan Heart Center, Egypt, and am now developing the new cardiology services at Jimma.  As well as my clinical work and my teaching at the medical school I lead the NCD programme, providing training, supervision and mentoring in our rural health centres.  My research interests include the prevalence of rheumatic heart disease, the epidemiology of hypertension and diabetes, and the prevalence and management of ischaemic heart disease.

Sister Kebebush Shenko
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Dr Alexander Hicks

I was born in Jimma, Ethiopia and have lived here all my life.  I completed my nurse training  in 2007, and gained my BSc in 2016.  I am the nurse lead for the NCD programme, based in the new Jimma University Hospital, where I see patients and coordinate the work of our clinics.  I visit the health  centres regularly, to supervise the nurses and health officers, provide in-service training and collect data for monitoring and evaluation.  I am also the mother of three young children.  

I am a consultant respiratory physician at Queen Alexandra Hospital, Portsmouth with a specialist interest in airways disease. I have a master’s degree from the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, for which I undertook a dissertation in Malawi focused on improving TB diagnostic pathways. From my PhD in airways inflammation I have developed a research interest in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and in particular the role of air pollution in its development. My work with the THENA project aims to deliver high quality care to those with respiratory illnesses in rural communities where NCD’s have until recently received little attention. I hope to ensure the project will also facilitate a greater understanding of how primary preventative strategies can be used to limit NCD’s, including for example exposure to pollution.

Dr Martin Prevett
 Frehiwot Kebede

Dr Martin Prevett is a consultant neurologist with a specialist interest in epilepsy at University Hospital Southampton (UHS). He started working with the Tropical Health and Education Trust on chronic non-communicable disease in rural areas around Jimma and Gondar in Ethiopia in 1997. In 2010 he established the UHS – Ethiopia Chronic Disease Partnership and was successful in securing six years of funding through the International Health Links Funding Scheme and Health Partnerships Scheme to expand the chronic disease programme in Jimma and Gondar and create a sustainable model for chronic disease care in rural Ethiopia. Over the last four years, he has been involved in establishing organised stroke care at Jimma and Gondar University Hospitals with support from the Health Partnership Scheme and Veta Bailey Charitable Trust.


During a sabbatical in 2012 he delivered training on epilepsy for community psychiatric nurses in Ghana, and over a period of 10 years prior to this he taught regularly on the undergraduate neurology curriculum in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. He lectures on the global health course at Southampton University Medical School and on the DTM&H Course at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

Frehiwot is a public Health Practitioner. She graduated from Gondar University with a Bachelor of Science in public health and an MPH from the joint program of Gondar University and ACIPH in 2014. Frehiwot has been working in chronic diseases (HIV/AIDS) projects for the last 7 years.

Since joining the THET/HPA/THENA team, Frehiwot has been working in capacity building, overseeing the implementation of the NCD project at the health facility level. 

She is passionate about multisectoral partnership to reduce the prevalence of NCDs and improve the quality of care in Ethiopia.   

Mirchaye Mekoro

Mirchaye is a Public health & International development programmes manager, currently leading Health Poverty Action’s Ethiopia country office. He has been involved in grant making and managing diverse programmes in health, education, food security, livelihoods, disability, peace-building and conflict resolution in the Horn of Africa region covering Ethiopia, Somalia, Sudan and South Sudan. He is currently managing the Ethiopian NCD project which works towards increasing access to services through training and capacity building across Ethiopia. Mirchaye holds a Master’s degree in International Development Cooperation, and a Bachelor’s degree in Health Education and Behavioral Science.


Louise McGrath
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Katharina Brassington

I am an experienced manager of international development programmes and organisations with specific thematic expertise in health and social development and on policy influence. I have geographic experience across Latin America, Africa and Asia, with particular country experience in Brazil, India and sub-Saharan Africa. Areas of key competency and interest include Programme development and management, Capacity development and the Generation and use of evidence to inform policy making and practice. Originally trained as a nurse, I have a BSc in Philosophy and Sociology and an MSc in Environmental and Development Education. As Head of Programmes and Development at THET I provide oversight of our country programmes, including joint strategic leadership for the Ethiopia Chronic Disease Programme.

Kat joined THET in June 2020 as the Country Programmes Coordinator for Somalia/Somaliland, Ethiopia and Myanmar. She graduated from the University of Sussex in 2014 with a Master’s degree in Conflict, Security and Development.

Following this, Kat spent time working for NGOs in humanitarian settings such as the West Bank and Gaza, South Sudan, and the Bangladesh – Rohingya response in the field of protection and human rights.

Summer Simpson

Summer joined THET in May 2019 as Communications Officer.

Graduating from the University of Dundee in 2017 with an MA in Politics, she went on to complete an MSc in International Development at the University of Manchester in 2018, specialising in poverty, conflict and reconstruction. While at university, Summer held a number of voluntary positions for international and national charities.

Following the completion of her MSc, Summer worked in communications and fundraising for an international social work and education charity that supports street-connected children in Uganda.


She is passionate about locally-driven development and empowerment.

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